Critical Review — Beauty and the Beast: A Trip Down Memory Lane with a Few New Views

A tale as old as time was renewed this past winter. As many other girls, I grew up watching Beauty and the Beast. I won’t hesitate to say that I watched it at least once a month for a couple years. When Disney announced that they would be filming a live-action Beauty and the Beast, I was overjoyed. But I was also slightly nervous — would they get it right? would it live up to my expectations?

When the trailer came out for the live action film, it had the most views (127.6 million) in its first 24 hours of any movie in history — beating “Fifty Shades Darker” and “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”. #BeautyAndTheBeast was the leading twitter trend within the first half hour of the trailer’s release. It become one of the most anticipated movies, attracting young and old audiences alike.

On opening day, lines stretched all around the concession stands in the lobbies of theaters. Lines not much shorter than those found at Disneyland on a busier afternoon. While waiting in line, little girls in yellow Belle dresses could be seen twirling and posing with a cardboard cutout Beast. Once in the theater, few seats — peppered across the room — were left unoccupied. The much anticipated film was finally beginning.

At the beginning of the movie, Belle walks — really it’s dancing, but that’s only another reason everyone calls her “peculiar” — through the market singing about her great life and all the people in her little town. It’s the same song that starts off the original animated version. Starting the movie this way brought back many memories of the movie before it even got started.

The movie as a whole is very similar to the original but it also has a couple new story lines that contribute to the overall success of the film. We now know more about Belle’s past life — what happened to her mother — a more in-depth understanding of her father, and a look at the the back story of the curse which takes over the castle and kingdom. Belle has the same sweet and loving personality, but is now much more innovative. She is an inventor — creating a washing-machine using a barrel, a donkey, and a well. She’s no longer just a little town girl who gets bullied for reading. She is an innovative strong young woman who stands up for herself.

These differences really made the movie grow, but it was the many similarities that let this movie be the perfect reminder of old times. Young audiences are enjoying the movie for the first time but teenagers and adults can all watch this movie with happy memories playing like a side movie in their minds.

It’s not just a movie to go and watch. It is a movie to go and see with family and childhood friends. This movie is a reminder of simpler times.

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